Town Council flies the flag for Armed Forces Week

Last week was Armed Forces week and to mark the start and end of the week Alnwick Town Council held its annual Flag Raising and Lowering Ceremonies at Alnwick Castle on Monday June 19th and Saturday June 24th.

Alnwick Armed Forces June 19th 2017

 

 

 

 

Flag Raising ceremony at Alnwick Castle

Attending both ceremonies Mayor of Alnwick, Councillor Alan Symmonds said “as Mayor of Alnwick and on behalf of Alnwick Town Council I have always felt it was important that as a town we are able to acknowledge the members of the armed forces and I hope that in some way our ceremonies during Armed Forces Week do that”.

 

Representatives and veterans from the three armed forces, lead my Mayor, paraded through the Barbican entrance onto area in front of the Fusiliers Museum.  The parade also included standard bearers from the RAF Association, Coldstream Guards Association, Fusiliers Association and British Legion, Town Councillors and members of the public.

 

Monday’s Flag Raising ceremony was led by Reverend Craig, who was a Chaplain to the Queen from the early 1990s until he retired in 2002, who gave a brief introductory address. This was followed by psalm 67 and a reading from St Matthew Chapter 5 entitled Salt and Light which the Mayor read.  Prayers for the Queen, Armed Forces, Army Reserves and Cadets of the Sea, Air and Land were said by Reverend Craig.  A minute’s silence was held at 11am in remembrance of those who lost their lives and all those affected by the fire at Grenfell Tower. This was part of a UK minute’s silence which all government buildings marked.

 

The National Anthem was sung and Reveille played whilst the Armed Forces flag was raised.

 

Saturday’s Flag Lowering ceremony again saw representatives and veterans from the three armed forces, standard bearers, Town Councillors and members of the public led through the Barbican into the castle by the Mayor onto the area in front of the Fusiliers Museum.

Armed Forces Flag Lowering JUNE 24th 2017

 

 

 

 

Flag Raising ceremony at Alnwick Castle

 

Prayers for the Queen, Armed Forces, Army Reserves and Cadets of the Sea, Air and Land were said by Madeline Russell, from St James’s United Reformed Church in Alnwick, who also led attendees in The Lord’s Prayer and gave the final blessing.

 

Specially chosen readings included passages from Deuteronomy and the Venerable Bede and were read by representatives of the navy, army and air force. The ceremony concluded with the group standing to attention to sing the National Anthem then turning towards the flagpole on top of the Fusiliers Museum and whilst The Last Post was played the Armed Forces flag was lowered.

 

Alnwick was one of over 300 locations which held ceremonies to honour Britain’s Armed forces present, past and future sharing the day with the national Armed Forces Day Ceremony which took place in Liverpool.

 

The Mayor finished by quoting George Orwell “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because men stand ready to do violence on their behalf” and asking the representatives of the Armed Forces to pass on the continued thanks for their support from the people of Alnwick.